The first stop was the ubiquetos walk of fame. This is the area where there are stars' names on paving stones, which stretch for over a mile, along with the famous handprints in blocks of cement.
After a stroll we all got back in the van, and drove around Hollwood whie our guide showed us where all the stars' houses were. It's amazing that everyone lived so close to each other. We saw plenty of large and extravagant houses. One had seventy bedrooms, and a 16 lane bowling alley and only three people were living there. Another had a canal running through it. Yet another had a swimming pool on the top floor and a glass floor so you could look up into the water from the floor below.
The next place we visited was Beverly Hills. This very upmarket part of town is guarded by hundreds of security personel, and several thousand security cameras. They have so much money there, that they paint the fire hydrants silver with actual real silver paint. The area is policed so well, that if you were to even lght a cigarette in the wront place, you would be stopped by police in under a minute! We were shown the toilet where George
After this we went on to Venice beach for lunch. This is a massive, sandy beach, and is the site where Baywatch is filmed. We walked along the beach for a while and got a sandwich from one of the kiosks on the beach front. The beach was very idyllic, plenty of sand and clear blue ocean. We spent a while looking around the beach and the shops along the front. I bought a towel, as I forgot to bring a bath towel with me from home.
On a few occations we saw tennis shoes hanging from the power lines. It was explained to us that this was a form of initiation ceremony. Kids who were initiated into the gang would prove themselves by beating up another kid the same age in a rival gang. They would them steal their shoes, which would be hung up in a public place to humiliate the other kid. This is just a precurser to the violence that has made keeping law and order in some areas an impossibility. However, some would say one of the reasons that this started was the racist tendancies of the police themselves.
After this, we were taken to see the most famous sight in Hollywood, the Hollywood sign. This sign originally read 'Hollywoodland', and was erected as an advert for the Hollywoodland real estate company to encourage people to move up to the hills. Later on, the last four letters were dropped to form the current sign, known all over the world. In the 70s, the original wooden sign was taken down, and replaced with an identical-looking metal one. This was paid for by the save the sign campaign, a charity formed exclusively to maintain this historic landmark. We all took cheesy pictures of each other standing in front of the sign.
After that, we went back to the hostel. Later on, I went to see what the hostel's dinner was tonight, and I saw Carla, Allison and Carilyn eating there. The choice was tuna salad or tuna salad. I chose tuna salad and ate it with them, after which we got into a conversation with the chef and one of the recetionists, along the lines of how blinkered Americans were to other countries. Then we played a few card games, and then went to bed.